With sixty nine 737 deliveries in December Boeing has set a new annual record for deliveries in 2018. Falling just short of their goal of 815 deliveries the 2018 totals trump the company’s record of 763 deliveries set in 2017.
This comes after quite a few hiccups Boeing experienced from some parts suppliers over the summer that saw shortages of engines from CFM and fuselage sections from Spirit Aerosystems which lead to around 600 employees temporarily being reassigned to the 737 assembly plant in Renton, WA.
“Boeing raised the bar again in 2018 thanks to our teammates’ incredible focus on meeting customer commitments, and continuously improving quality and productivity.” Said president of Boeing Commercial Airplanes Kevin McAllister.
With a current seven year backlog for 737 orders Boeing increased production of the 737 series to 52 units per month in mid 2018. The 737 had a total of 580 deliveries, half of which being the new Max series (B73M).
Boeing also added an additional 109 787 Dreamliner orders which brings the total to 1,400 units ordered since the program launched in 2007. New customers include Hawaiian Airlines, who are switching from the older Airbus A330 as well as Turkish Airlines. The 787 currently has the highest production rate for any twin-aisle jet. Boeing closed out the year with close to one hundred and fifty 787 deliveries.
2018 also saw Boeing delivering a total of ten 767 based KC-46 tankers to the United States Air Force after being awarded a $2.9B contract that would add an additional 18 aircraft bringing the order total to 52.
The record year saw even the aging 747 receiving orders from UPS for the freighter variant of the aircraft. However, Boeing will no longer be offering the passenger version of the aircraft and cargo orders are expected to fade out in the coming years as carriers continue to seek out more fuel efficient twin engine aircraft.